North Point wins bat­tle of un­beat­ens in the pool

North Point swim­mers re­main per­fect af­ter sweep of Patriots

Maryland Independent - - Front Page - By MICHAEL REID mreid@somd­

Some­thing had to give and some­thing did as the North Point boys and girls swim teams both emerged vic­to­ri­ous fol- low­ing a bat­tle of the un­beat­ens against North­ern on Fri­day at the Ed­ward T. Hall Aquatic Cen­ter in Prince Fred­er­ick.

The North Point girls (7-0 SMAC) earned a first- and third-place fin- ish in the fi­nal event of the night — the 400-yard freestyle re­lay — to slip past North­ern, 140-136.

In the boys race, the Ea- gles (7-0) won nine of 11 events and earned a 148-130 vic­tory over the Patriots.

“It’s al­ways a great feel­ing to get good wins against a great team,” North Point head coach Jeff Riven­burg said. “Re­ally it was just grit and heart. You can’t coach heart. You’ve got it or you don’t and my girls and guys showed to­day they have heart. And North­ern’s got that heart, too. Their girls and guys have some fan­tas­tic swim­mers and they were swim­ming lights out; they re­ally came to swim. I real- ly think the dif­fer­ence when you came right down to it that my girls and guys leaned on each other.”

In the girls meet, North Point held a 127-121 lead head­ing into the fi­nal event of the night and needed a win and a third-place fin­ish to seal the vic­tory. Teams earn 10 points for a win, five points for sec­ond-place and three points for a third-place fin­ish.

The Ea­gles got ex­actly that as Carla Ar­quero, Ker­ri­gan McMillen, Mya Riven­burg and Nathalie La­Fontant won the race in 3 min­utes 57.01 sec­onds. Mean­while, its B team of Carsen Ess­ing, Han­nah McMillen, Jae­lyn Sapp and Syd­ney Marohn-John­son placed third in 4:16.26.

“If we do any­thing less, we lose,” Jeff Riven­burg said.

North Point won just 5 of 11 events but added 11 sec­ond- and third-place fin­ishes, com­pared to just five such place­ments by the Patriots.

“I told the girls every place gets at least a point,” Jeff Riven­burg said. “First to sixth, we needed every place. We can’t have DQs

or false starts or any of that or we don’t pull a win out. And they came to swim.”

North Point swept all three re­lays and La­Fontant (50 free 25.69 sec­onds) and Ar­quero (100 free 59.09) each added an in­di­vid­ual win and a sec­ond-place fin­ish. Ker­ri­gan McMillen was run­ner-up in the 200 in­di­vid­ual med­ley and 100 but­ter­fly.

“It was good. It was a re­ally tough race, but I tried my best to do as well as pos­si­ble,” McMillen said of the 200 IM, in which she dropped three sec­onds off her per­sonal record. “I knew I wasn’t go­ing to get first, but I thought that fin­ish­ing sec­ond was rea­son­able. I wanted to stay with the leader as much as I could and do the best I could at the end.”

Ess­ing was sec­ond in the 100 free and third in the 50 free. Eight Ea­gles had at least a third-place fin­ish.

Jeff Riven­burg said the con­tri­bu­tion by Ma- rohn-John­son, who placed fourth in the 200 IM with a PR of 2:35.41 and also swam lead­off on the fourth-place 200 med­ley re­lay team.

“I put her in the IM and it’s not one of her typ­i­cal events, but we had some girls out and I re­ally needed a good time out of her,” he said. “With­out her we don’t win this meet. And you can say that about a lot of girls.”

The Patriots (7-1) were led by dual win­ners Lau­rel Gal­laudet (200 free 2:03.65; 500 free 5:28.01), Kelly Mo­ton (100 breast- stroke 1:09.88 (a school record); 200 IM 2:18.85) and Jenna Mehls (100 fly 1:06.61; 100 back­stroke 1:07.09).

Vic­to­ria Plaudis (200 free), Cal­lie Heim (50 free) and Nyah Hartwell (500 free) each added a sec­ond-place fin­ish and Haylee Plaudis placed third in the 100 fly and 200 IM.

“It was re­ally fan­tas­tic,” Hartwell said of the 500, in which she PR’d by al­most four sec­onds in 5:52.76. “The girl next to me [Mya Riven­burg] was go­ing out too fast so I pulled up a bit, and the sec­ond half of the race I put ev­ery­thing I had into it.”

“I re­ally think it was the com­pe­ti­tion she had up against her and know- ing her team­mates were cheer­ing her on,” North­ern head coach Car­rie Bradley said. “And she was side by side with an- other swim­mer and that pro­vided an ex­tra oomph.”

Ea­gles take Patriots in boys event

In the boys meet, North Point (7-0) won nine of 11 events and went on to re­main un­de­feated and in the process, knocked North­ern from the ranks of the un­beaten.

Manny Agra­vante (200 free 2:02.86; 500 free 5:41.49) and Lawrence Sapp (100 free 51.04; 200 IM 2:09.67) each won two events for North Point, while Tyler Whit­sett took the 100 fly (58.36) and Anh-Khoa Nguyen won the 100 breast (1:08.81).

“I was rusty, but I was able to pull it out,” Agra- vante said of his 1.01-sec- ond mar­gin of vic­tory in the 500. “Hon­estly I thought we were both go­ing to die out in the end but I was able to pull through and do it for the team.”

“He had a fan­tas­tic meet and pulled up two wins,” Riven­burg said of Agra- vante. “And Lawrence I put him in some tough events and against some tough swim­mers and and he pulled out two wins and was clutch in our re­lays.”

Kevin Rohrbaugh was sec­ond in the 50 free by two one-hun­dredths of a sec­ond (24.74) and added a third-place fin­ish in the 100 free (56.35). The Ea- gles also swept all three re­lays.

The Patriots (7-1) re­ceived wins from James Har­mon in the 50 free (24.72) and Nolan Dennes in the 100 back (59.78).

“He swam hard and it’s first year on team,” Bradley said of Har­mon, a sopho­more trans­fer. “He’s melded well with our swim team and be­come a part of it.”

Jamie Law­less (200 free 2:04.18; 500 free 5:42.48) and John Bub­ser (100 fly, 1:01.22; 200 IM 2:16.47) each placed sec­ond in two events. Dennes also added a run­ner-up fin­ish in the 100 free.

“Our main swim­mer who was sup­posed to be swim­ming [the 200] with me was sick so I thought to my­self, ‘I have to be the one,’” Law­less said of the event, dur­ing which he dropped al­most 10 sec- onds. “It’s not ver y stress- ful be­cause I know I can do it. It’s just ex­haust­ing, but I just tried to swim as hard as I can. [In the 500,] the per­son next to me was with me the whole time and I saw him on every foot turn and it kind of pushed me to go faster. And I sprinted at the end to stay ahead of him.”

Riven­burg said he was wor­ried about his team’s per­for­mance af­ter a 15day lay­off. The Ea­gles’ last SMAC meet prior to Fri­day’s event was a sweep over La Plata on Dec. 21.

“I def­i­nitely wor­ried about that be­cause we just got back in the pool Tues­day,” he said. North Point is sched­uled to swim against Hunt­ing­town and host Lackey at 5 p.m. to­day. “My team ba­si­cally swam alone or with their club teams so I was wor­ried about it a lit­tle bit. We’ve got room for im­prove­ment; it wasn’t our best meet of the sea­son but we swam re­ally well and we’re leav­ing with two wins. I can’t speak highly enough about North­ern’s team. They swam lights out and they nipped us in some [races] and our con­fi­dence took a lit­tle bit of a shot but we re­bounded.”

“Ac­tu­ally I’m re­ally proud at what my swim­mers were able to do,” Bradley said, as­sess­ing her team’s per­for­mance. “They’ve got their sprits up re­ally high and they’re very con­fi­dent in them­selves. We came in and I think if we had every­one healthy and fit that we could have done bet­ter. We’re go­ing to get back in the wa­ter and we’re re­ally ex­cited to have a full week of prac­tice be­fore our next meet [a dual meet at 5 p.m. Fri­day against McDonough at North Point].”


North Point’s Syd­ney Marohn-John­son slices through the wa­ter on her way to a fourth-place fin­ish in the 200-yard In­di­vid­ual Med­ley dur­ing Fri­day’s meet with North­ern at Ed­ward T. Hall Aquatic Cen­ter in Prince Fred­er­ick. Marohn-John­son and the Ea­gles edged the Patriots 140-136 to re­main un­de­feated.

North Point’s Dar­iusz Macken­zie was third in the 200 IM dur­ing Fri­day’s meet with North­ern at Ed­ward T. Hall Aquatic Cen­ter in Prince Fred­er­ick. The Ea­gles edged North­ern to re­main un­beaten. STAFF PHOTO BY MICHAEL REID

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